Korg DSS-1

Korg DSS-1 Image

A wonderful early digital synthesizer. With eight notes of polyphony, two oscillators per voice, a noise source, two multi-stage envelopes, a resonant filter and auto-bend, the DSS-1 has much in common with Korg's previous flagship DW-8000. But it went much further, boasting twin digital delays, oscillator sync, an improved unison mode, a lush analog VCF switchable between 12 and 24dB, and more. Whereas the DW-8000 got its raw material from 16 stored digital waves, the DSS1's oscillators take their source from sampling, additive synthesis, or even hand-drawn waveforms!

It actually had a warm sound and was great for creating pads and textures, as well as deep basses and drones. The synthesis method is based on altering various waveform samples via 2 data sliders. It can sample and then treat the samples as its waveforms - that includes all filtering and envelopes.

Korg DSM-1 Image

The DSM-1 (1987) was the expanded rackmount version.

It was used by Jean Michel Jarre, Joe Zawinul, Michael Cretu of Enigma, Mark Jenkins, Hiro Kawahara, Paul Nagle, Shriekback, and Steve Winwood.

Lookup Korg DSS-1 Prices

The link above will take you to an eBay search for this synth to see active listings with more images, specs and information. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace. Our marketplace gets thousands of visits every week so make sure to check back often if you want to buy or sell a synth.

Related forum topics


Are you looking to buy or sell a Korg DSS-1? Post an ad in Gear For Sale or a request in Gear Wanted. For spare parts and repair services check out Gear Services & Other Goods. Our forums also has a Buyer’s Guide section where you can ask for advice on buying synthesizers.

89 Visitor comments
September 16, 2013 @ 10:20 am
prices goin down, really dont understand why. time to pick up one!
June 17, 2013 @ 6:13 am
I just purhased mine for $175.00 and it's in great condition. Wasn't sure what to expect soundwise from the DSS1, since I couldn't get many sounds loaded at the music store.
Got it home, messed around a bit with some of the 60 discs it came with.....what an awesome synth/sampler this DSS1!
I am more than impressed with the sound capabilities....very very cool.
The keybed leaves something to be desired as its the ol' thunk-da-dunk plasticy sounding keys, but I have it MIDI'd up to my Alesis QS 8.1 anyways.
June 11, 2013 @ 8:39 am
thanks! I also have about 50 disks from the original Korg sound library and the original manual

June 10, 2013 @ 9:04 am
I'd say $200 - $250 is a reasonble price with a broken drive assuming everything else is functioning. $400 for a nice fully working one
June 7, 2013 @ 9:46 pm
My DSS-1 does not have a disk drive becasue it went bad a few years ago and I removed it. What should I sell this for?
VSE Rating


User Rating

Rated 4.56 (966 Votes)

  • Check Price
  • The link above will take you to an eBay search for this synth to see active listings. If you don't find it there, try looking in our forum marketplace or post a wanted classified.
  • Specifications
  • Polyphony - 8 Voices
  • Oscillators - 16 - 2 oscillators per voice
  • Sampler - 256k
  • Memory - 5 sec sampling
  • Synthesis - 128 Sine waveforms you re-shape using 2 sliders
  • Keyboard - 61 keys w/ velocity and aftertouch
  • Filter - Lowpass 2 or 4 pole + envelope
  • Control - MIDI
  • Date Produced - DSS-1: 1986, DSM-1: 1987
  • Resources & Credits
  • Images from

    Thanks to Glen Stegner for providing info.

Errors or Corrections? Send them here.